"By Lori Day – In mid-January, this article on The Huffington Post hit my Facebook newsfeed like a Justin Bieber deportation petition—it was everywhere. In it, HuffPost Family News Editor Jessica Samakow writes:
'Pay attention, 2014 Mad Men: This little girl is holding a LEGO set. The LEGOs are not pink or “made for girls.” She isn’t even wearing pink. The copy is about “younger children” who “build for fun.” Not just “girls” who build. ALL KIDS. In an age when little girls and boys are treated as though they are two entirely different species by toy marketers, this 1981 ad for LEGO — one of our favorite images ever — issues an important reminder.'
Something about this piece with the iconic 1981 ad tapped the zeitgeist and it became one of HuffPo’s more viral articles in recent memory, receiving over 60,000 shares. And along the way, the small world of Facebook led to a comment thread on my wall where someone, upon seeing the little red-haired girl holding her LEGOs, wrote, “Hey, I know her!” And now I do too, because that’s the serendipity of social media. Her name is Rachel Giordano, she is 37 years old, and she’s a practicing naturopathic doctor in Seattle, Washington. Giordano agreed to talk to me about her childhood and the ad, and to pose for a new Then & Now photo meme, which you see above in the lead image."...
“A leader’s real ‘authority’ is a power you voluntarily give him, and you grant him this authority not with resentment or resignation but happily.”
In a culture that calls pop culture celebrities “thought-leaders” and looks for “leadership ability” in kindergartners, we’re left wondering what leadership actually means and questioning what makes a great leader.
The best definition of the essence beneath the leadership buzzword comes from David Foster Wallace.
"This is a car that is made almost entirely out of plastic. The Strati took 44 hours to make, and it's completely driveable. It's lighter and, if you believe its creators, also stronger than its metal counterparts. And it just might be the future of automotive technology everywhere."...
"Famous landmarks like the Arc Du Triumph, the Pyramids of Giza, and the Sagrada Familia have been photographed countless times by photographers from around the world, and they are recognizable to most, if not all, of us. But this collection of stunning aerial photographs gives us a bird’s-eye-view of these places, casting them in a totally new light."... (40 photos)
[Photo caption: In this Sept. 8, 2010 photo released by Comedy Central, host Stephen Colbert appears during the "Been There: Won That: The Returnification of the American-Do Troopscapeon" special of "The Colbert Report," in New York. His AmeriCone Dream Fund gave a $10,000 grant to Healing Improv. (AP Photo/Comedy Central, Scott Gries)]"
"ADA, MI – A tiny nonprofit group that brings laughter to grieving people was stunned to receive a $10,000 grant Stephen Colbert, the satirist and comedian who created “The Colbert Report.”
“It came out of no place,” said Bart Sumner, an actor and writer who formed Healing Improv in 2012. When his wife called to tell him the news, he said, “I nearly drove off Ada Drive. It absolutely blew me away.”
Healing Improv runs comedy improv workshops that aim to relieve stress, provide emotional connections and laughter for people who are grieving. Sumner created the organization after his 10-year-old son, David, died in 2009. He realized that performing and teaching helped him survive that devastating loss.
“Laughter and tears are right next to each other in the emotional scale,” Sumner said.
The group operates on a small scale. The workshops are free. Sumner donates his time. It has raised about $4,000 in the past 18 months to cover some travel expenses and rental space.
The $10,000 grant makes a big difference for the group, Sumner said. It will help pay for advertising to reach more participants and more travel costs to partner with groups requesting workshops.
“This will really allow us to spread our net out and help people all over the place,” Sumner said."...
"The annual “winterim” trip to San Diego taken by the seventh and eighth graders at Alexander Dawson School in Lafayette, Colo., will be missing one element this year. The students will no longer be visiting SeaWorld, thanks to the efforts of one intrepid eighth grader named Phoebe Goldstein.
Goldstein, a longtime opponent of whale and dolphin captivity, had heard of other schools nearby that took field trips to the marine park. When she heard that her own school was planning a trip, she was shocked — and driven to action."...
"Despite being close to 100, a yoga teacher is still inspiring students who are a quarter of her age. Tao Porchon Lynch has been practicing yoga for more than 70 years and at the tender age of 96 she shows no signs of slowing down. Aged 85 Tao decided to take up ballroom dancing and is now putting her 26-year-old dance partner Vard Margaryn through his paces in her hometown of Westchester, New York. In spite of having undergone a full hip replacement and recently breaking her wrist, Tao believes that it’s her positive attitude that keeps her so young and agile."...
[4:07]..."We don't read and write poetry because it's cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.
To quote from Whitman, "O me! O life!... of the questions of these recurring; of the endless trains of the faithless... of cities filled with the foolish; what good amid these, O me, O life?"
Answer. That you are here - that life exists, and identity; that the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse.
That the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse.
What will your verse be?"
Thank you for your gifts, humor, and inspiration.... Rest in Peace Robin Williams.
By Alan Boyle - "A new kind of atlas reveals which genes control the development of which areas of the unborn human brain — and researchers are already studying the atlas' maps to gain new insights into neurological conditions such as autism.
"You can use this to understand the roots of developmental disorders," said Ed Lein, an investigator at the Seattle-based Allen Institute for Brain Science. Lein is the senior author of a report in the journal Nature about the $35 million brain-mapping project.
"Rogan Brown is an Anglo-Irish artist that specializes in intricate hand cut paper art sculptures. Currently living in the ‘wilds’ (i.e., in a forest on the side of a mountain) of Southern France, Brown explains:
'I look for patterns and repeated motifs that run through natural phenomena at different scales, from the microscopic to the macroscopic, from individual cells to large scale geological formations.
I am inspired in part by the tradition of scientific drawing and model making, and particularly the work of artist-scientists such as Ernst Haeckel. But although my approach involves careful observation and detailed “scientific” preparatory drawings these are always superseded by the work of the imagination; everything has to be refracted through the prism of the imagination, estranged and in some way transformed.'" http://twistedsifter.com/2013/08/hand-cut-paper-art-by-rogan-brown/
Benjamin Zander has two infectious passions: classical music, and helping us all realize our untapped love for it -- and by extension, our untapped love for all new possibilities, new experiences, new connections.
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